by Harijan

Once – so the story goes – a wild flower bloomed in a nameless field. With promiscuous innocence of softness, it sang the brilliance of luminous time.

By happenchance, a vagabond visited this wilderness and rested from the tender distance. Amidst the early autumn grass turning brown and bending from age, he laid his soul bare. Unwitnessing the flower, he slept.

As the daylight fell and the evening glowed, the poet once came to. Over the head, his awakening eyes caught this modest flower hiding its secret shapes and colors into the folds of its petals.

In the sighing whisper of his breath the petals ruffled, and a glimpse of red embarrassment dripped life into the eyes of this traveller so far away from his forgotten homeland.

The youth of his days rushed back, and the face of a girl who once confided the secrets of her life returned to him as a waking dream. The twilight was azure in his eyes, and the vision was a rapture of this flower pressed between the forgotten memories bound with time drained of dear life.

Against the backdrop of the spinning heavens, the falling consciousness spent the night where home rested under the skirt of this girl-flower awaiting in the void and back.

In the gentle dawn, the flower wilted and dropped its petals one-by-one. They fell on his forehead and bid him conscious to this new day.

The dreams of past vanished with the receding night sky, and the man saw what had happened to the flower which had brought him so much love and joy. Somberly, he knelt and bowed his head next to the withered remains of the flower past and sang a foreign prayer to the west wind blowing onward his way home.

Standing, a wholesome warmth stirred in his heart, and taking the pregnant belly of the flower stem with him, he called his journey forth with the rose of Sharon.